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Last updated: 8 June 2011
Sunshine Party Beans
1-1/2 cup ketchup
1 medium onion -- chopped
1 medium green bell (sweet) pepper -- chopped
1 medium red bell (sweet) pepper -- chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
2 tablespooons molasses
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon ground mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon Tony's or other spicy seasoned salt (opt.) 1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 can kidney beans -- rinsed and drained
1 can great northern (white) beans -- rinsed and drained
1 can lima beans -- rinsed and drained
1 can black beans -- rinsed and drained
1 can black eyed peas -- rinsed and drained
1 can garbanzos -- rinsed and drained
1 can whole kernal corn, drained
1/4 cup rice or quinoa (optional)
In a dark pot that holds at least a gallon, combine the fresh veggies and sauce ingredients; mix well. Add the beans, peas, and corn; mix well. Cover, bag/clear-cover (if needed), and set in cooker early in the day. Cook until hot and bubbling and onions/peppers have softened a bit. For a less soupy mixture, add the rice or quinoa after mixture gets hot. Everyone likes it, vegetarians and meat eaters alike! A great addition to any Potluck or Barbecue!
Note: the cans of beans and corn are the size that is close to a pint, and you can use any colorful combination of beans or peas you like as long as it adds up to 6 cans. If clouds roll in, you can finish this indoors in your slow cooker. This is a terrific recipe for the HotPot or Molly Baker cookers, but it will work in any solar cooker that can handle a gallon of food. (Recipe by Sharon Cousins)
SharonID's Cornmeal Mush (Maize Porridge, Polenta) Method
Cornmeal mush (or maize porridge or polenta) can be successfully cooked in a panel cooker or box oven. The reason for stirring while cooking on a stove or over a fire is to prevent the porridge from sticking and scorching and to help prevent lumps. Your porridge will not burn in a solar panel or box oven, and here is the trick for preventing lumps. Use water and corn (maize) meal in the proportions you would usually use (for me that is, by volume measure, four parts water to one part cornmeal) and add salt or other seasonings as usual. The trick is to use cold or cool water and add it gradually at first, stirring carefully so that there are no lumps in the mixture. Then set it to cook (dark, lidded pot with bag or clear cover unless it's going into a box oven) and just leave it alone until the porridge is done (if you think your cooker heats unevenly, it is all right to rotate the pot a half-turn occasionally). I suspect that if you tried to stir it while cooking, you would just create lumps, since it cooks from the bottom up, rather like rice, so if you stir halfway through, you will mix the firmer, cooked part from the bottom with the less cooked part on top and lumps may result. If you just let it cook until all the water is taken up, you will have a nice smooth porridge. If it stays in the cooker beyond that point, it may begin to brown just a bit, which can give it an especially good flavor. If you want to make fried mush, start one day early and let your mixture cook in a dark loaf pan (a matching pan upside down makes a good lid—secure with binder clips). When it is done, cool and then chill for slicing the next day to fry.
See main article: Hard porridge